Breaking News
More () »

Ankeny families protest mask requirement in school, but district upholds mandate

Monday, a little over 30 parents and children gathered to voice their concerns over wearing masks for the two weeks remaining in school.

ANKENY, Iowa — Weeks after a similar protest, a group of families in the Ankeny Community School District gathered outside a school board meeting again to protest the district's mask mandate.

The district told Local 5 Monday, they have no plans on lifting the mandate. Still, a little more than 30 parents, guardians, and children held signs outside the school's administrative building asking for a choice in the matter. 

Some signs called to "end the abuse", while others showed images of a facial infection one girl's family says she suffered as a result of a mask.

Emily Peterson helped organize Monday's protest, and spoke out at the one in April as well. She worries the mask requirement will continue into the summer, during sports practices.

"Someone is going to get really hurt," she said over a megaphone. "These masks need to be lifted off now, so it is our intention never to stop, never to give in."

Twelve-year-old Kaisen Fertig spoke during the school board meeting's public comment section. He said he's upset he's not able to see his friends smile or laugh.

"You can wear them if you want to, but give the parents actually a choice if they want their child to wear it," said Fertig.

The in-person meeting was closed to media and the public, instead, streamed online. After the meeting, each Ankeny school board member declined to comment on the matter.

Samantha Aukes, spokesperson for Ankeny Community School District, sent the following statement:

At this time, there are no changes to the mitigation practices currently in place for Ankeny Schools and face coverings are still required. However, we continue to work with our local public health department to determine if any changes to mitigation strategies should be made yet this school year.

RELATED: LIST: Iowa adapting to CDC's latest guidance on mask-wearing

RELATED: Target, CVS drop mask mandates for fully vaccinated customers, employees